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From 5 strings to 4 whats my best approach?

Discussion in 'General Instruction [BG]' started by Depth_Charge, Sep 23, 2008.

  1. I got some recordings from a guy doing some original metal stuff that grew on me as I listened to it.

    The lines are played on a BEADG 5 string and I suspect the B is drop tuned to A.

    I had the option of learning off full recordings, or bassline free versions. I chose the full versions to see what's currently going on, but being a 4-string EADG or DADG player I'm stuck how to approach learning/developing the basslines.

    Do I drop tune or octave down (pedal) to learn the recorded lines (which are pretty good and fit the songs well IMO), or ask for no bass versions and hope playing standard tuned doesn't invade the guitars' sonic space? I'd like to nail the songs as recorded to show the guy I can learn lines, but also improvise on them to show I've got a creative voice as well. Tough question to answer I bet :)


  2. If the originals were played in drop tunings, I assume it's a big part of the "sound" the writer is trying to achieve and I imagine that being played up an octave would drastically reduce the required sludginess (and I don't mean sludginess in a negative way). Not having heard the stuff I may be wrong.

    I'd be tempted to try an octave pedal. It may or may not suit the material, but a distorted mix of Bass and octaver can sound hellacious. It may however take up too much space in the frequency spectrum of the music.

    Another alternative is, depending on how badly you want the gig, re-string a 4 to B-E-A-D.

    Or bite the bullet and get a 5'er.
  3. Yeah mate, I know what you mean and the tunes do have a sludginess to them.

    The guy called me yesterday and the discussion was pretty favourable both ways. He sounded happy I picked the string setup and that a guitarist wrote the bass lines. I was happy he told me he'd had standard tuned players play before and was OK.

    He told me I had total freedom and is going to send me some no-bass versions of the songs.

    He also mentioned he played a 7 string guitar, reminiscent of Tool and Meshuggah I think.

    So my plan going forward is to learn the songs with an octave downer (I have an ME50B multi-fx board) in DADG for now to be able to hit the ground running, listen to as many 7-string bands as I can stand (any other band suggestions welcome haha) and maybe in the future have another crack at a 5 string, since I had one and sold it because I never really got used to it.

    Thanks again.
  4. xshawnxearthx


    Aug 23, 2004
    new jersey
    why don't you just tune bead?

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